A Good Read for Everyone

February 19, 2012
by Lory Laughter

I like reading...short things. Research papers, journal articles and stories short enough to hold my granddaughter's attention can hold usually my interest. This series of books by Toni Adams can be credited with my return to the world of reading actual books. Now I even own a Kindle and sometimes download offerings longer than Charlie Brown's Christmas. (Though I admit that one is still read in February.)

While the titles indicate dentistry, these books are a great tool for students, instructors and practitioners in any field interested in improving communication skills. The nonverbal communication booklet has proven especially helpful to me, both in and out of the clinical dental setting. Do yourself a favor, get a set for yourself, your office and/or your classroom.

Toni Adams, RDH, MA, has combined knowledge and experience from 26 years of clinical dental hygiene practice with her BA and MA education in Communication Studies to write the seven-book Dental Communication Brief Book Series. The books were developed with the busy professional in mind, so can be read in one or two sessions by all members of dental teams. Books 1-5 are in print. Books 6 and 7 are in production. Learn more at: http://www.toniadams.com/ToniAdams/Brief_Book_Series.html.

Book 1: Health Communication and Persuasion in Dentistry: Communication skill is a key part of the dental armamentarium. Read about the elements and benefits of patient-centered care, the relationship between communication and evidence-based care, and both classic and new ideas about how to influence others.

Book 2: Intercultural Communication in Dentistry: Cultural issues complicate communication, especially as North America and the world diversity. Learn about cultures, including your own, and how culture impacts health interactions.

Book 3: Verbal Communitcation in Dentistry: Improve oral communication and learn: how the words that we use influence practice; how to work with low literate (about half of US & Canadian residents) and limited English proficient (LEP) people and interpreters; about laws that mandate providing interpreters for LEP patients; and ideas for how to find and fun translation and interpretation.

Book 4: Nonverbal Communication in Dentistry: As much as 92% of emotional communication, and a large portion of other communication, is nonverbal. Emotions run high in dentistry. What do we "say" to patients with our nonverbal messages, and what are they trying to "tell" us?

Book 5: Listening in Dentistry: The number one complaint of dental patients is that we don't listen to them. Learn why patients who feel heard are happier and healthier, and how to be a better listener.

Book 6: Patient Interviewing in Dentistry: This book addresses the purposes of health interviews and the skills needed to conduct them successfully, what patients want, cultural issues in interviewing, how to interview difficult people, and it also overviews motivational interviewing.

Book 7: Patient Education in Dentistry: Learn about theories of learning, motivation, and decision-making; cultural issues, patient education strategies; teaching patients how to search the internet; and how to minimize miscommunication.